Screen Shot 2015-03-03 at 5.04.41 PMWell, well, well. Another independent, gobbled up. FARO, maker of laser scanners for metrology (very tight tolerances) and infrastructure applications (huge data sets, accurate, often outdoors) just acquired kubit, a German company that has been a leader in developing hardware-agnostic software to process point clouds. You may have heard of kubit’s PointSense Plant, which (semi)automatically processes raw point cloud data into pipe runs and other plant elements using pattern recognition. “Walk the run” means the software takes the user along a length of pipe; identifies pipes, tees, reducers and in-line fittings and then makes suggestions to the user on which to use based on catalogues that are identified for the plant/project.  I’m not sure if kubit invented “Walk the run”, but it’s a common term and technique point cloud processing gets ever more automated.

The acquisition makes sense. FARO has been buying software companies that can add value (and workflows for people not used to using software) to the point cloud data — most recently with several accident scene recreation tools. Of the FARO deal, CEO Jay Freeland said, “[t]he acquisition of kubit is an exciting step in FARO’s strategy to develop integrated, disruptive 3D documentation product offerings for the Architecture, Engineering and Construction market. By adding kubit’s products to our portfolio, customers now have significantly enhanced software options to serve a vast array of point cloud modeling, analysis needs, and measurement capabilities with very high connectivity to the Autodesk suite of products.”

The acquisition includes substantially all of the assets of kubit’s U.S. distributor kubit USA, Inc. The price was not disclosed, though FARO did say that it was an all cash transaction that includes an initial payment as well as future earnout payments.